Thnx for sharing your thought ADG...one of these days i need to get hold of a VIW sample...
A friend was generous enough to send me samples of Parfums de Nicolaï - New York, Armani Prive - Oranger Alhambra, and Creed's Virgin Island Water to evaluate.
My observations are not those of a professional, rather I am an enthusiast who finds beauty in almost every fragrance. The ratings I give belong to me, in that they respond to how well these "fit" on me. If some of the more seasoned noses could either concur or totally disagree.. or even just add observations, anything.. I'd be honored. These reviews were written in "real time".
I'm just into the dry down of the Armani Prive - Oranger on one wrist. Citrus parallel with AdP!!! WOW, bang on. I'd say the citrus here is a bit more refined than in AdP Colonia or Colonia Assoluta - brighter and "fresher" (hate that word).
You know what else I smell a bit of here? Green Jeans by Versace - perhaps reminissent a bit of that lime/pine accord. I'm hesitant to give this anything more than a 3/5 perhaps because of a cynicism I've developed towards the citrus/herb or citrus/spice genre. I could see it being an excellent, fresh summer scent - though the longevity on me appears to be paltry. Update - citrus fades away and it's a light but intoxicating herbal.
PdN - New York. Whoa! Not what I was expecting, though I kept an open mind and gritted my teeth. A less refined, feminine version of something vaguely similar to BdP. Ann Coulter could wear this one successfully.
Opening is quite sweet to my nose - there's musk in here, I'm sure of it. There also seems to be a fig note, though that could be blended with woods - I'm unaware of the pyramid for this one, but it's predominantly a musky, fig overature that dances its way into gourmand territory. There's also a note in here that is offputting and cloying - sweet, sweet amber/musk? You can tell this is quality juice - it's got a bit of booze in the opening, like one of those cherry-vanilla liqueurs that brings massive hangovers.
Ahh.. not for this gentleman, as the comparison to BdP is almost absurd to me. It's not redundant, though, because the blend seems like it could really evoke headaches. It's a bit like the drydown of Lalique PH mixed with a whiff of bad breath and amp'd up on the sweetness (musk?). Silage and projection? Impressive.. though unappreciated. I'm going to be brutally honest and give it a 2/5 and resign to the fact that I'll never be able to wear this one.
Creed - VIW. Well now.. I had a tiny vial (.5ml) from Les Scenteurs and now have a generous decant. Initially it's 50/50 lime and coconut cream - maybe a bit more lime in the initial whiff. Silage/Projection? Awesome. I'm starting to enjoy this one more each time I use it. Now the "cream" part I mention must be the rum note. Ever tried Malibu rum? I despise the taste of the stuff - but throw some Malibu on ice, splash a shot of cream in there and squeeze a dash of lime just to be sure - and that's VIW to me. It actually makes me salivate a bit, longing for a hot sunny day somewhere exotic.
And I think it NEEDS sun and heat.. but it's quite a departure from Erolfa, MI or SMW. Muted ambergris - no "Creed signature" to it. I'm now getting the very muted sea salt component - not a dirty "marine" note, but salty. There's something a bit erotic in this one for me - maybe some olfactory association that was programmed into me at some point in life.
If I lived in the climate I wish I lived in, instead of the one I do, this would be a fragrance in my weekly rotation. If I did Hawaii or Cancun.. I'd probably use a 1 oz bottle during one vacation alone. Sadly, I don't... this is very pleasant to wear but seems a bit out of place in my circumstance. 3.25/5 is my final verdict - though I'd be persuaded to go up to a 3.5 if I could learn to love it after getting the privilage to wear it in the context of a tropical paradise.
My two cents - hope to read yours!
I recently said on another thread that it's taken me a long time to appreciate jasmine and oud, so just give it time. Also, I found Habit Rouge (the EdC) to be too strong at first, but now I like it and don't find that it's too strong.
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Loved the review of VIW, as I'm looking to sample / trade for a bottle! Good reviews, thanks.
Thanks for sharing. VIW needs to be worn under the heat of the sum to bloom. I sampled in the winter and it just felt wrong. A few months later wearing it to the beach on a sunny day and it was a great experience.
I was also underwhelmed by New York. I remember sampling it and thinking, at the end of the day, 'that's it!?'. I am going to re-test it one of these days, just to be sure, but for now I'm not a fan.
Coincidence: Just yesterday, I just got a sample of Oranger Alhambra. Remember anthonydg, citrus scents that contain quality ingredients are generally short lived and fleeting. Take this into consideration. Of course, we all want scents to stick around, but over time I have come to appreciate a well done, crafted citrus scent - and just accept the longevity issue (and over apply or re-apply if necessary).
I do live in a tropical climate, and Virgin Island Water is the epitome of a summer fragrance. If you have any of the sample left over, hold onto it and wear it on the hottest day in the upcoming summer. I think you might be able to see it's 'magic' under these circumstances. And yes, it smells salty. Love that salt-lime accord, it's very sexy, I agree.
Last edited by mikeperez23; 13th March 2009 at 12:06 AM.
First time I tried New York I was underwhelmed too. I thought it smelled like a CK scent when I first put it on, and further, that it was all confused with gourmandish things and a senseless blitz of elements. Just like you seem to, Anthony!
That happens for a half hour on me now, and then it dries down into the elements that remind me of BdP so much. I find it very subtle, with sillage, very involved, and very different depending on when in the day you smell it, and how closely you pay attention to it. It's simple if you just catch a whiff, but if you think about that whiff, it gets deeper, and if you go hunting for where on you you can smell it more densely, it changes again and is more involved.
I'm not urging you to be more interested in it again, Anthony, as I know how that goes--we like what we like--but for all readers and NY smellers, I say the scent really rewarded all the interest and testing I put into it.
But the first application, that was hell.
That girl, that bottle, that mattress and me.
I don't find it similar to BdP but if you want to stretch the comparisons, New York is the bastard love child of a hopelessly out-of-form and way-past-its-prime version of BdP and the standard Guerlinade. Once upon a time there were all these wild comparisons on Basenotes .. Heritage EDT was another one which was labelled as a "BdP-alike" or even "BdP-killer" (from what I have tried, its pretty far from being even close to either of the labels). Infact New York and Heritage are more similar to each other than to BdP, especially in the basenotes. To me, BdP is its own beast and while the other two are decent enough are not in the same class.
Interesting observations. I pretty much agree with your view on VIW, it didn't wear well recently (in deep winter), but come summer it certainly deserves another try. PdN NY is a masterpiece, but I vastly prefer wearing BdP, as I find the former to stuffy and cloying on me. I do think they go through a phase in the midnotes where they are quite similar, but BdP satifies me from the get go. and if I want sweet refinement I really prefer Third Man over NY.
II est de forts parfums pour qui toute matière/Est poreuse. On dirait qu'ils pénètrent le verre.